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Commems Collection: What If? 1938 Hollywood, CA 50th Anniversary

 
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 Posted 09/25/2022  07:26 am Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add commems to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
In May 1938, Representative John Martin Costello (D-CA) introduced a bill in the House that called for the striking of half dollars "in commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of Hollywood, California."

The bill's language did not include specific details regarding the founding of Hollywood. Such an omission may have been by design as public records document that the town plan for "Hollywood" was registered in 1887 not 1888. As such, its 50th anniversary should have been marked in 1937 rather than 1938.

On February 1, 1887, a map of a town named "Hollywood" was submitted to the Recorder's Office of the County of Los Angeles by Harvey Henderson Wilcox. Wilcox was the new owner of a 160-acre tract of land west of Los Angeles and he had plans to convert the undeveloped property into a town. Wilcox had recently moved to Los Angeles from Ohio with his wife Daieda; it was Daieda who named the future town. Regular water shortages in the developing town led to residents voting to being annexed by the much larger Los Angeles in 1910. Los Angeles had recently constructed a new aqueduct system for its water supply and could easily accommodate the needs of the ~500 residents of Hollywood {Los Angeles had about 100,000 residents at the time).

Hollywood became the site of the United States' movie industry in the early 1900s as studios moved to it from the East to "escape" from the many restrictions imposed on it by Thomas Edison (owner of many patents related to movie making). "Tinseltown" was born and continues to be synonymous with the US movie industry to the present day.

The coin bill sought up to 250,000 silver 50-cent pieces without restriction as to Mint facilities, and specified that all coins produced were to feature the year/date "1938" regardless of when struck. The bill did not, however, include an expiration date for coining authority nor did it specify a minimum size for coin orders. Thus, the coin's sponsor, the Committee for the Commemoration of the Founding of Hollywood, California, could, theoretically, have placed orders beyond 1938, but the coins struck would have appeared identical to those struck in 1938.

As written, the bill would have authorized a coin with the potential to be an ongoing fundraiser for the Committee. IMO, such an ongoing program would require new purchasers to be found each year vs. repeat buyers looking to keep their collection complete. Without a design or date change, collectors would not have needed to purchase additional coins in the post-1938 years to keep their collections current. Regardless, the open-ended bill would have been shutdown in 1939 with the passing of Public Law 76-278 that retired all previous commemorative coin Acts approved before March 1, 1939. (Read more about it here: Regulating US Commemorative Coins.)

Upon its introduction, the bill was referred to the House Committee on Coinage, Weights, and Measures. It did not gain approval within the Committee and was never reported out for further consideration. Thus, the bill suffered the same fate as the 1931 coin proposal for a 50-cent piece in commemoration of Los Angeles' 150th anniversary. (You can read more about the Los Angeles bill here: What If? 1931 Los Angeles, California.


For more of my topics on commemorative coins and medals, including more What If? stories, see: Commems Collection.




Collecting history one coin or medal at a time! (c) commems. All rights reserved.
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 Posted 09/25/2022  09:19 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Coinfrog to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
That's one I don't miss.
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 Posted 09/26/2022  11:24 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I have to admit it, I would have liked this one. Maybe because I love movies, maybe because my wife is from LA and has some distant familial ties the industry.

However, for the greater good, I agree this was a good one to skip.
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 Posted 09/26/2022  11:27 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Coinfrog to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Maybe they could have done it in a Mt. Rushmore style, say with the busts of Charlie Chaplin, Lionel Barrymore. Greta Garbo and Mae West!
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 Posted 09/26/2022  11:42 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
See, now you got me wishing it had been made even more!
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 Posted 09/26/2022  9:33 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hokiefan_82 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks, commems. Depending on what had been done with the design, that could have been an interesting one. However, as jbuck said it was probably for the best...
My U.S. Type Set: https://www.NGCcoin.com/registry/co...sets/278808/
My U.S. Classic Commemorative Complete Set: https://www.NGCcoin.com/registry/co...sets/278741/
My 20th Century U.S. Type Set - Proofs only, No Gold https://www.ngccoin.com/registry/co...sets/396301/
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 Posted 09/27/2022  08:06 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add commems to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I agree that a Hollywood, CA coin would have presented some interesting design possibilities, but remember Hollywood got a commemorative half dollar 15 years earlier in 1923 - the Monroe Doctrine Centennial coin was a Hollywood/movie industry commemorative coin (it was sponsored by the American Historical Revue and Motion Picture Historical Exposition held in Los Angeles, CA).

For more, see:

- 1923 Monroe Doctrine Centennial - Exposition Program






Collecting history one coin or medal at a time! (c) commems. All rights reserved.
Edited by commems
09/27/2022 08:07 am
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 Posted 09/27/2022  09:36 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
...remember Hollywood got a commemorative half dollar 15 years earlier in 1923 - the Monroe Doctrine Centennial coin was a Hollywood/movie industry commemorative coin (it was sponsored by the American Historical Revue and Motion Picture Historical Exposition held in Los Angeles, CA).
Oh yeah! The industry association somehow slipped my mind.

I will always associate it with LA, CA... which is why I have that one in my 7070. You remember, you were there when I bought it! I cannot believe that was eight years ago now.
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 Posted 09/29/2022  05:42 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add nickelsearcher to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Another great read commems. I, as well, do not miss this proposed coin.
Take a look at my other hobby ... http://www.jk-dk.art
Too many hobbies .... too much work .... not enough time.
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 Posted 09/29/2022  08:43 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add commems to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

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You remember, you were there when I bought it! I cannot believe that was eight years ago now.

I do recall! I also recall the difference between our post counts at the time to be somewhat less than it is today. I just can't keep up!


Collecting history one coin or medal at a time! (c) commems. All rights reserved.
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 Posted 09/29/2022  08:44 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add commems to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

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Another great read commems.

Thanks, as always, for your ongoing support and encouragement!


Collecting history one coin or medal at a time! (c) commems. All rights reserved.
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 Posted 09/29/2022  10:44 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
I do recall! I also recall the difference between our post counts at the time to be somewhat less than it is today. I just can't keep up!


You are definitely way ahead in quality though.
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